DSL - SND1 ORRA, adj., n. Also orrae, -o(w), -y, o(o)ra, orie, oary, o'era'. Superl. orraest (Ags. 1897 F. MacKenzie Sprays 65). [or]
I. adj. 1. (1) Spare, additional to what one requires, extra, supernumerary, odd, superfluous (Sc. 1721 Ramsay Poems Gl., 1808 Jam.; Per., Fif., Lth., Ayr. 1915-26 Wilson; ne.Sc., em.Sc.(a), Lnl., wm.Sc. 1964).
*Sc. 1728 Ramsay Poems (S.T.S.) II. 55:
[To] lay out ony ora Bodles On sma' Gimcracks that pleas'd their Nodles.
*Ayr. 1786 Burns Jolly Beggars Recit. 1:
To drink their orra duddies.
*Dmf. 1808 J. Mayne Siller Gun 14:
Forth came our Trades, some ora saving To wair that day.
*Sc. 1812 Scots Mag. (Aug.) 624:
Gi'e her a bit orra-weed, To soothe her age.
*Per. 1835 J. Monteath Dunblane Trad. (1887) 57:
This . . . had the effect of blowing off their [cattle's] orrow wind.
*Dmb. 1844 W. Cross Disruption ii.:
I . . . sent mony an ora cheese and pickle meal to ye.
*Fif. 1864 W. D. Latto T. Bodkin viii.:
Cud I no crawl under the board, an' hap mysel' wi' the orra clippins?
*Abd. 1868 G. MacDonald R. Falconer iii.:
Maybe they'll hae an orra fiddle whaur I'm gaein'.
*m.Sc. 1898 J. Buchan John Burnet iv. iv.:
We've an orra bed i' the house for the maister, and plenty o' guid saft straw i' the barn for the man.
*s.Sc. 1937 Border Mag. (Aug.) 123:
I'm no saying that if the laddie had a sair throat or the auld man needed something to his tea, I couldna find an orra eke if need be.
(2) Of one of a pair: not having the other, unmatched, odd (Sh., Bnff., Abd., Kcd., Ags. 1964).
*Sc. 1808 Jam.:
Ane orrow buckle is one that wants its match.
*Sc. 1856 R. Chambers Trad. Edb. 203:
A shop kept by an eccentric personage, who exhibited a sign bearing this singular inscription --- Orra things bought and sold --- which signified that he dealt in odd articles, such as a single shoebuckle, one of a pair of skates . . . in short, any unpaired article.
*Ags. 1876 N. & Q. (Ser. 5) V. 416:
An aged aunt . . . described a set of tea china as embracing twelve cups and saucers and an orra cup, meaning that it was unmatched --- that is, without a saucer corresponding to it.
*Lnk. 1910 C. Fraser Glengonnar 25:
Mistress McFarlane . . . was carefu' to ha'e the lads an' lasses invited in as equal numbers as possible, for she didna, she said, like onybody to feel orra.
(3) Of persons and things: spare, not occupied or in use at any given moment or for any particular purpose, at a loose end (I. and ne.Sc., Ags., Per. 1964).
*Edb. 1773 Session Papers, Petition B. Yule (15 June) 18:
As the building intended was deserted, the area behind the said walls was an orrow place. . . . The house was an orrow place before David Banks took possession of it.
*ne.Sc. 1802 Edb. Mag. (July) 56:
An' never anes came back to see me Fan ye was orra!
*Sc. 1808 Jam.:
A person is said to be orrow, when he has no particular engagement, when he does not know well what to make of himself.
*Sc. 1894 Scots Mag. (Dec.) 40:
The ``orra-house'' where tools and tubs were placed, where the hens nightly roosted, and where in a warm corner the grunt of the brood-sow might be heard.
*Ork. 1911 J. Omond 80 Years Ago 14:
An ``orra'' or extra house for calves or pigs.
*Abd. 1920 A. Robb MS. iii.:
Ilk ane had an auld mither on their orra han'.
*Gall. 1930 H. Maxwell Place-Names Gall. 219:
When sheep are sorted on the hills in spring, those belonging to the flocks of other owners are put into the ``orra bught''.
2. Occasional, coming at irregular or infrequent intervals, appearing here and there (ne. and em.Sc.(a), Lth., Ayr., Wgt., Slk. 1964): (1) in gen., esp. of time:
*Edb. 1773 Fergusson Poems (S.T.S.) II. 89:
As lang's an orrow morning may be spar'd.
*Abd. 1790 A. Shirrefs Poems viii.:
When on the haughs he wont to ly, To keep frae skaith, Of orrow comers trampin' by, His mither's claith?
*Sc. 1808 Jam.:
Ane orrow body, an occasional visitor, one who comes transiently, or without being expected. . . . Ane orrow day, a day on which one has no particular work, a day or time distinguished from others by some peculiar circumstance.
*Sc. 1815 Scott Guy M. ix.:
What the waur were the wa's and the vault of the old castle for having a wheen kegs o' brandy in them at an orra time?
*Rxb. 1821 A. Scott Poems 88:
I've gi'en these ora verses birth, At your desire.
*wm.Sc. 1837 Laird of Logan 109:
Persons meet at orra times to weet their whistle.
*Ags. 1872 J. Kennedy Jock Craufurt 31:
To ken what time he's comin' wast Some orra nicht to hae a cast.
*Dmf. 1877 R. W. Thom Poems (1883) 43:
An oora coggie o' brose frae the pan.
*Sc. 1886 Stevenson Kidnapped xxvii.:
I daresay you would take an orra thought upon the gallows.
*Per. 1897 C. M. Stuart Sandy Scott 71:
I wish Sandy would . . . no just enlarge on ony orra subjec' that comes in his way.
*Kcb. 1901 R. Trotter Gall. Gossip 345:
By an orra time he wud drive sheep an nowt.
*m.Sc. 1917 J. Buchan Poems 29:
A dwaibly warld! I'll no deny There's orra blessin's.
*Lnk. 1922 T. S. Cairncross Scot at Hame 53:
I used to step gey cheery when I thocht I'd had eneuch, Folk said I ga'ed asklant at orra hap.
(2) Specif. (i) of a job: casual, odd, of an unskilled, auxiliary nature; (ii) of a person or animal: doing work of this nature. Gen.Sc., partly derivative from 1. (1). Also adv., at odd jobs. Comb. orra-wark.
*Dmf. 1823 J. Kennedy Poems 37:
When Vulcan grown weary with thumping the gads, Besides orra jobbing, and shoeing the yads.
*Ags. 1824 J. Bowick Characters 14:
For ``o'era' jobs'' and works of simple art.
*Rnf. 1878 C. Fleming Poems 237:
An' can rin orra errands in seasons o' need.
*Mry. 1897 J. Mackinnon Braefoot Sk. 75:
To the ``yaird'' to ``howe'' the kail or such like ``orra jots.''
*Abd. 1917 C. Murray Sough o' War 25:
Tho' noo an' than, wi' dreepin' sark, we've biggit dykes an' dell't --- That's orra wark; oor daily darg is fechtin' fan we're tell't.
*Lnk. 1919 G. Rae Clyde and Tweed 83:
I'm weel eneuch to work at orra wark.
*Fif. 1951 People's Jnl. (20 Oct.):
Shepherd-Cattleman wtd., for Martinmas; exp. man with or without son for orrawork.
*Rxb. a.1860 J. Younger Autobiog. (1881) 99:
Sitting at the open end o' the table, just like an orra body that had nae say i' the house ava.
*Arg. 1907 N. Munro Daft Days xix.:
The orra gardener did not hurry to his task.
*Edb. 1916 T. W. Paterson Wyse-Sayin's xii. 9:
Ony man, wi' nane but a bit orra servitor aboot him, may no be muckle thocht o'.
*Rxb. 1923 Watson W.-B.:
He works orra.
Special combs.: (a) orra beast, a horse kept for odd jobs (ne.Sc. 1964); (b) orra billie, see
[BILLY], 4. (Abd. 1920 G. P. Dunbar Peat Reek 35; ne.Sc. 1964); (c) orra boy (Gall. 1930); (d) orra horse. Gen.Sc.; (e) orra lad(die). Gen.Sc.; (f) orra lass(ie). Gen.Sc.; (g) orra loon (ne.Sc. 1964); (h) orraman, a man who does odd jobs, esp. on a farm (Rxb. 1802 J. Sibbald Chron. Sc. Poetry Gl.; Lth. 1825 Jam.; Sc. 1869 J. C. Morton Cycl. Agric. II. 724; Cai. 1903 E.D.D., ``of recent introduction''), also in combs. cattle-orraman, tractor-orraman. Gen.Sc. Used adv. in 1901 quot.; any mechanical contrivance to replace a human assistant used by a man working single-handed, e.g. a sack-lifter with a movable platform and crank (Abd. 1948 Abd. Press & Jnl. (15 May); Bnff., Abd., Ags. 1964), a wire-strainer used in fencing (Bnff., Abd. 1964); (i) orra woman, -uman (Abd. 1964).
*Sc. 1829 G. Robertson Recoll. 161:
The better sort of farmers kept at least one riding-horse . . . or, instead of this orro, or supernumerary beast . . . they had a Highland garron.
*Abd. 1903 Banffshire Jnl. (29 Sept.) 3:
Next morning his master ordered him to yoke the orra beast.
*Bnff. 1934 J. M. Caie Kindly North 31:
The orra beastie's cleekit, spavin't, aul'.
*Ork. 1908 Old-Lore Misc. I. viii. 324:
Tam greu ap an' at da lang an' da lent whin he waas a ora boy he wanted tae join da kirk.
*Hdg. 1848 A. Somerville Autobiog. Working Man 62:
People used to say that old Bonar, the orry horse, and old James, the orry man, were exactly alike in gravity and steady performance of work.
*Per. 1876 N. & Q. (Ser. 5) V. 415-6:
A two-plough farm has . . . two pairs of work-horses . . . If there is a fifth work-horse, he is an orra-horse.
*Ags. 1894 J. Inglis Oor Ain Folk 217:
Geordie . . . worked two pairs of horses with ``an orra horse for the gig and odd jobs.''
*Lth. 1921 A. Dodds Antrin Sangs 18:
Wi' the orra horse the laddie fills The shed wi' a bing o' neeps.
*Per. 1897 C. M. Stuart Sandy Scott 10:
It would be fine to be ta'en on as an orra lad there.
*Kcb. 1897 A. J. Armstrong Robbie Rankine 4, 20:
The orra laddie cam' into the kitchen . . . An' the orra lassie was ben the spence, singing the young Simpson to sleep.
*Abd. 1918 W. Mutch Hev ye a Spunk? 35:
The orra loon, puir stock, Was tyavin' wi' the rake an' makin' windlin's o' the brock.
*Abd. 1946 J. C. Milne Orra Loon 7:
Fin I am aince the orra loon at Mains o' Pittendree.
*Inv. 1812 Mem. Highl. Lady (Strachey 1911) 172:
Orraman means the jobber or Jack-of-all trades.
*Abd. 1871 W. Alexander Johnny Gibb xxxix.:
The red-haired orra man.
*Ayr. 1889 H. Johnston Glenbuckie xii.:
This put me in mind of an answer I received from the orra man at William Dickie's.
*m.Lth. 1894 P. H. Hunter J. Inwick i.:
Dave Da'gleish, the orraman.
*Kcb. 1899 Crockett Kit Kennedy xxix.:
They are wantin' an orra man, for the guidman has a sair hand.
*Fif. 1901 G. Setoun Skipper of Barncraig xxiii.:
He's aff wi' a German; awa' sailin' orraman, so to say, wi' Captain Fögel.
*Gsw. 1937 F. Niven Staff at Simson's xxv.:
Of his return the cashier was made aware by the arrival in his office of the odd-job man --- the ``orra man''.
*Mry. 1953 Elgin Courant (6 Nov.):
A tractorman is expected to drive and to maintain his machine --- or at least to keep it clean and serviced. A tractor-orraman . . . is only expected to drive the tractor and can be called upon to do orra work as the rest of his job.
*Rxb. 1955 Southern Reporter (6 Oct.):
Orraman (married) or Orrawoman required for Hillhead, attend some cattle in winter.
3. Miscellaneous, sundry, nondescript (ne.Sc., Ags., Per. 1964).
*Sc. 1818 Scott Donald Caird iv.:
Donald Caird finds orra things Where Allan Gregor fand the tings.
*Abd. 1826 D. Anderson Poems 106:
There I was deaved a' afternoon Wi' orra hame-o'er blether.
*Per. 1857 J. Stewart Sketches 11:
His pouches, like a broker's shop, are cramm'd wi' orra things, Buttons, bools, an' bits o' cawk, wi' peeries, taps, and strings.
*Gsw. 1863 W. Miller Nursery Songs 18:
Ilk morning scraping orra things Thegither for his wife.
*Rxb. 1870 J. Thomson Doric Lays 9:
Against the battered gable were mony ora things.
*Slg. 1877 J. M. Neilson Poems 16:
For orra ailments o' the bairns, Her ready skill can sune provide.
*Lnk. 1895 W. Stewart Lilts 76:
But o' a the orra caitions Ever plagued weel-daers' patience Nane could bate the bluid relations.
*Kcb. 1896 Crockett Grey Man xi.:
It was not seemly that a gentleman . . . should collogue overly long with all the orra serving-men and women.
*Dmf. 1915 J. L. Waugh Betty Grier 34:
I didna gi'e in wi' orra readin' on the Lord's Day.
*Bnff. 1927 Banffshire Jnl. (26 April) 6:
We anticipated a great sale of ``orra trock'' at the roup of the Mains.
*Ags. 1957 Forfar Dispatch (28 Nov.):
A' the eens [cows] I kent wiz aye pushonin thirsels eatin linoleum or ony ither orra thing they cud find lyin aboot.
4. Strange, uncommon, peculiar, not normal (Sc. 1899 Mont.-Fleming; em.Sc. 1964). Also used adv., uncommonly. Hence orra-like, of an odd or strange nature.
*Lnk. 1873 A. G. Murdoch Doric Lyre 78:
Orra men an' things are seen When daft folks gang abroad.
*Gsw. 1877 A. G. Murdoch Laird's Lykewake 183:
Though Bess was braw, an' Meg was fair, an' Kate was orra sweet, There wasna ane o' a' the three could move the laird a wheet.
*Ork. 1880 Dennison Sketch-Bk. 189:
They say that I'm daft, an' they shak' their heids, An' think me unco' orrow.
*w.Lth. 1892 R. Steuart Legends 189:
Maybe ye hae noticed, sir, that the bodies hereaboots are kinna orra folks, and no jist sae weel mannerd's they micht be.
*Gall. 1900 R. J. Muir Muncraig vii.:
There's naething orra or unco about that.
*Sc. 1920 D. Rorie Auld Doctor 26:
I palmer aboot for kettles to cloot, Wi' an orra-like weird to dree.
*Lth. 1920 A. Dodds Songs 26:
Where the auld coo calved the cuddy, Ye'll meet sic orra things.
5. Of persons or things: worthless, rejected, shabby, dirty, slatternly, low, coarse, unseemly, disreputable (Abd. 1825 Jam.; ne.Sc., Ags., Per. 1964). Also adv. Combs. orra-folk, the tramping fraternity, vagrants; orra-leukin, -like, also adv., in a careless- or untidy-looking manner.
*Mry. 1852 A. Christie Mountain Strains 73:
Some auld orra Jennys were buyin a fairin.
*Ags. 1867 E. Johnston Poems 215:
To hire some o' the Saxon dames, sae orrie like and queer.
*Abd. 1868 W. Shelley Wayside Flowers 226:
Nae caird-wife not beggar-man passes or spares him; `Mang orra folk Clapper is kend far and wide.
*Abd. 1880 W. Robbie Yonderton 14:
There's hardly ever a nicht but we hiv some orra-leukin' craetur or ither aboot the toon.
*Ags. 1891 Barrie Little Minister i. vi.:
``Let us hear how this gypsy struck you. How was she dressed?'' . . . ``A tasty stocky, but gey orra put on.''
*Ags. 1892 A. Reid Howetoon 127:
He laid them doon, orra-like, at the end of the stack.
*Ags. 1896 A. Blair Rantin Robin 88:
I'm nae an orra woman, though, weel I wyte, I'm a puir eneuch ane this nicht.
*ne.Sc. 1920 D. Rorie Auld Doctor 24:
An' while that baith the twa o' them Were sayin' some orra wordies.
*Abd. 1928 J. Baxter A' Ae `Oo' 26:
Tae hear my native music played A' doon yon orra street.
*Ags. 1959 G. Michie Glen Anthol. 13:
My auld bauchlit shoon they are orra and dune, The sutors declare, and they'll mend them nae mair.
II. n. What is left over, a remaining piece or part, an odd bit, an unoccupied space, an article not in immediate use; in pl.: odds and ends (Sc. 1808 Jam.; ne.Sc., Ags., Fif., Arg. 1964), odd jobs (Ork. 1964).
*Abd. 1791 Aberdeen Mag. 350:
Fan gloamin fell, an' a' our oras done, Belike the sna broo bokin' frae our shoon.
*Edb. 1791 Caled. Mercury (12 Sept.):
Ay break your fast on Ait Meal Croudy --- But dinna fail To fill the orra o' the coggy Wi' gude brown Ale.
*Lnk. a.1832 W. Watt Poems (1860) 351:
To buy a braw new cap or gown, Wi' the orras o' their fee.
*Bnff. 1853 Banffshire Jnl. (21 June):
What orras we can grasp for gain.
*Per. 1895 R. Ford Tayside Songs 276:
Fu' dear is ilka orra o' our ain ingle-nook.
*Sc. 1936 J. G. Horne Flooer o' the Ling 55:
Come, lassie, lay your orries by! Let's daun'er doon the clearin.
[O.Sc. orray, unmarried, as in I. 1. (2), 1597, = I. (3), 1623. A reduced form of o(w)eraa, over all, over and above, extra, supernumerary. See
[OWER]. The word is equivalent to Eng. odd, with sim. extensions of meaning.]